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Three, two, one

Three, two, one

Has anyone ever asked you what your favorite words in Spanish are? Well, I’ve made a list of some of mine for you to take a quick look at. I’m sure that, as always, you want to know why I love these words above all others, and the answer is because of their origins: Testicles, salt, and drinking!

The possible etymology of these words entertains me. Pay attention, I said “the possible”, because I am a dreamer and I like to imagine that this is the real story.

The first of my favourite words is TESTIMONIO. So, it seems that in the past, when a man had to swear that he was going to tell the truth, instead of doing it by putting his hand on a sacred book, he put his hands on the most valuable thing possessed, which were his testicles (TESTICULO in Spanish)! Doing this showed everybody that he wasn’t afraid of losing them because he was going to tell the truth. It became a TESTImonio. When I first heard this story, I loved it…can you imagine someone doing that in court today?

The second word is SALARIO. Historically, salt (sal in Spanish) has always been a very valuable and lucrative product; in fact there were often direct transport links between salt mines and cities. The soldiers who took care of these ways, and guarded them against robbers and bandits, were paid with salt and from there we get the word “SALario”.

The origin of the word TAPA is mythical; I love telling the two legends about its origin:

  • The first story tells that King Alfonso X had prohibited his guards from getting drunk while they were on duty, guarding their king. Makes sense, right? Well, to avoid getting drunk, but not wanting to sacrifice some drinking time, the soldiers drank the wine while eating a small portion of food that was put on their pitchers of wine. Don’t you line your stomach when you drink?
  • The second one is a very practical approach to drinking. Imagine sitting down after work on a hot day, a cold wine or beer in front of you, nothing better. However, you weren’t the only one who was interested in your cold beer. Flies would immediately swarm around you, trying to get a sip of your beer. A unique solution was invented; food was placed over the beer or wine to prevent that the flies getting inside the bottle. Who says drinking kills brain cells…this is genius!

Every word has a story, find a good story for your own favourite words!




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